How To Spot A Work-At-Home Scam

You need some extra money, but need to stay home with your young children. You see an ad on TV saying you can make the money you need at your computer without having to do much work or have any special skills. You're tempted, but are those ads legitimate, or too good to be true? 

I hate to tell you this, but most of them are. The companies who write those ads count on people either being out of work and desperate to find something or needing extra income but not being able to go out and get it. Moms who stay home with their children while their husbands work are especially targeted because the companies who create these 'jobs' know that few people are able to make it on only one income nowadays, but it's not always feasible for families with young children to have both parents out working. The idea of making an income from home is very enticing, but there are some things to look out for if you're considering such a position.

If they ask for money up front, beware. A legitimate company will NEVER make you pay to work for them. Even if you have to get some sort of license to do the job (for instance, insurance sales), most companies will either pay for it outright or reimburse you for what you paid. You should never have to pay for training materials, leads, etc.

On a related note, a legitimate employer will not ask you to 'wire funds' or transfer money using your personal bank accounts. The only reason a legitimate employer will ask for your personal banking information is to know where to deposit your paychecks.

Check out the company on the internet. A quick Google search of the company's name should bring up at least some basic links you can read on your own to decide if you want to proceed. For more pointed results, search for the company's name with 'fraud' or 'scam' attached and see what comes up., a popular 'urban legends' website, features many stories like that. Their 'Fraud and Scams' section linked below has some helpful information. Searching on a discussion forum such as may also be helpful in terms of reading other peoples' experiences. Such sites can be a lot to wade through, though; one 'scam-disguised-as-a-job' company I was taken in by had 40 pages of discussion about it! Either way, it's worth the time to do the search.

The Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission can tell you if any complaints have been lodged against a company. One thing to consider, though, is that scam companies sometimes change their names to avoid being 'exposed'. Also, while legitimate job search websites such as Monster and CareerBuilder don't knowingly feature listings from scammers, things sometimes fall through the cracks.

Hopefully I've been able to save you the headache and financial problems a fraudulent work-at-home job can cause. Above all, trust your gut. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
For more information and helpful tips, here are some websites you should visit: and Scams-
Better Business Bureau-
Federal Trade Commission-

1 comment:

  1. You are completely right!! Most of them are scams targeting moms, I have found out the hard way.